“Get up! Get up!”
A loud shout came from the outside and and the noise roused Han Li out of his sleep. His eyes widened and he looked around, trying to understand what was happening around him. Frightened by the sudden shout, he had curled up into a tight ball. After a moment, he calmed down and realized that the owner of the voice was the other boy, Zhang Tie.
“Eat your food quickly and, after finishing, come out to see Elder Mo.” Zhang Tie handed over two steaming hot buns over to Han Li.
“Where did you get this food?” Han Li asked blankly as he accepted the steamed buns.
“In the valley next to us, there is a kitchen. I had seen a person eating some food. After he noticed me, he gave me some food. After I had finished eating my fill, I realized you hadn’t eaten, so I came over to bring you something to eat.” Zhang Tie smiled as he replied honestly.
“Thank you, Big Brother Zhang.” In his heart, Han Li couldn’t help but be moved. Seeing as Zhang Tie was older and more considerate than he was, he couldn’t help but call him “Big Brother Zhang.”
“No… no problem. Back home, I was used to doting on the other children. How could I just ignore you before you woke up? I… I felt a bit uncomfortable about leaving you alone. I felt terrible upon waking up, and it was obvious that you would feel the same way had you woken up too early, without even an ounce of strength. That’s why I didn’t wake you up right away.” As he said this, Zhang Tie seemed to be a bit embarrassed and his words came out stuttering with uncertainty.
Han Li had missed both breakfast and lunch and, as such, was starving. In three to five bites, one steamed bun was already in his belly. Shortly afterwards, he had thoroughly eaten both of the steamed buns.
“The morning is long past; we must report to Elder Mo.” Han Li burped in satisfaction and looked out the window. He noticed that it was in fact not the rising the sun but rather the setting sun. After realizing how much time had passed, he decided that it would be best to pay Doctor Mo a visit.
Zhang Tie didn’t object and followed Han Li out to where Doctor Mo’s room. They quietly went inside.
Inside Doctor Mo’s room, all along the walls were large shelves packed full of books.
Doctor Mo was sitting in a large throne-like chair in the back of the room and was reading a book that he apparently had great interest in. He was so immersed in his reading that he didn’t notice the children come in nor did he hear their loud greetings. Han Li, after all was a child, seeing that Doctor wasn’t paying attention to him, he became embarrassed and was at a loss with what to do. He didn’t know what to do, so he just stood around and waited.
After Han Li and Zhang Tie waited for a while, Doctor Mo slowly put the book down on the table and quietly sized up the two children. He raised up a tea cup and took a few sips, swallowed the tea, and started to speak.
“The two of you for the next few days will be my personal students. I will teach you some general knowledge about refining medicine and how to select herbs. Perhaps I may even teach you some of the healing arts. But it is still not decided whether I will teach you martial arts,” Doctor Mo explained expressionlessly before taking another sip of tea.
“I have a chant that will strengthen and help you cultivate your mind. I will show it to the two of you. However, I will not allow you to use it gain an unfair advantage over your enemies; you will only be allowed to use it to strengthen and improve your bodies. With regards to practicing martial arts, even if you learned them, it will be unlikely that you will actually have any fights. Regardless, after the six month secret disciple period, I will inspect your skill with this chant. If I am unsatisfied with your progress, you will be demoted to the outer sect. Do I make myself clear?” Doctor Mo’s tone suddenly became serious and appeared to attach a lot of importance to this chant.
Simultaneously Han Li and Zhang Tie responded, “We understand.”
“The two of you will leave now and return tomorrow morning.” Doctor Mo Waved his hands at the two of them to indicate that they should leave. He once again picked up his book and began to read.
Han Li couldn’t stand the sight of Doctor Mo just sitting there reading a book so he was the first to leave. He had never learned to read and only understood that the book’s title was composed of three letters. It was a pity since he recognized that books held valuable knowledge but he couldn’t understand them.
After exiting Doctor Mo’s room, Han Li couldn’t help but relax and let out a small sigh. He didn’t want to admit it, but the heavy atmosphere in the room scared Han Li so badly that he didn’t even dare to take a breath.
However, Han Li was now bursting with happiness because now he could be considered a true member of the Seven Dao Sect. Although he was only a disciple, he was glad that he was allowed stay unlike the other children who failed the examination and were sent back home. Even if he couldn’t pass the promotion test in half a year, he could still be an outer sect disciple like his third uncle. As Han Li saw it, his third uncle was a person of status and power, so in his heart he held a secret desire to fail the promotion so that he would be able to return home and see his parents and beloved little sister.
The next morning, Doctor Mo taught the two of them some medical knowledge. In the afternoon, they went to his book room and studied reading and writing intensively. They learned about the surprising toughness of the eight meridians, the acupuncture points, and some basic military knowledge. Later on they practiced the horse stance and performed various labors.
After a month, Han Li and Zhang Tie were separated and they no longer took lessons together as they once had. This was because Doctor Mo began to teach them the obscure chant. They had begun to spend most of their time practicing with this chant. In addition, Doctor Mo was very severe in regards to preserving its secrecy. He repeatedly warned them that if they told anyone else he would immediately kick them out.
During this time, Han Li learned many things from Doctor Mo about the Seven Dao Sect. The Seven Dao Sect’s later generation of the Seven Void Ancestor was called the Grand Sect Master. They had three Vice Masters and divided the sect into the inner sect and the outer sect. The majority of the sect members were in the outer sect. The outer sect also had many different internal halls, such as the Flying Bird Hall, Gathering Treasure Hall, Four Seas Hall, and the Foreign Blade Hall.These were the four major divisions of the outer sect. The inner sect had the Hundred Discipline Hall, Seven Void Hall, Worship Hall, and the Bloodshed Hall subdivisions. Within the last group are the Sect Master, Vice Masters, and some other elders.
Doctor Mo was not originally a disciple of the Seven Dao Sect. Many years ago, the Grand Sect Leader was travelling and suffered a surprise attack. During the enemy raid, he was dealt a severe injury and nobody could help him with it. As he was hanging between life and death, desperate for someone to save him, he met Doctor Mo, who then brilliantly cured the Grand Sect Leader’s injury with medicine and saved his life. The Grand Sect Leader couldn’t help but be grateful to Doctor Mo, and he later learned that not only was the doctor skilled in medicine and healing but was a decent martial artist. He invited Mo to stay in the inner sect and gave him a small valley for himself on the mountain as well as his own residence. Thus Doctor Mo settled in and was considered a member of the Worship Hall. To this day, Doctor Mo has been at the Seven Dao Sect. Although the disciples had never personally witnessed his skill before, they knew his martial arts were quite strong. Not to mention that with his medical expertise he had also saved many of the inner disciples’ lives before. Despite being expressionless and reserved, he still received many of the disciples’ reverence.